Schools have reopened in Baghdad. This has rightly been seen as a sign of progress for the Iraqi people. As a result of collateral damage, many schools are in disrepair. Teachers are forced to clean up their classrooms, sweeping floors and repainting walls.
However, in the wake of our overwhelming military success in Iraq and in the midst of our efforts to help rebuild the country, we must remember that conditions in many of our own nation's schools are in need of fixing as well.
In inner cities and rural countrysides across America, there are students who languish in schools that are in disrepair. There are children who attend classes each day with inadequate equipment and facilities. There are young people who cannot get a good education because their classrooms are too crowded.
With this knowledge, I urge the other presidential contenders to support House Joint Resolution 29, which would guarantee the right to a public education of equal high quality to all Americans. Just as we rebuild Iraq, we must take the necessary steps to make America a more perfect union.